The frequency of foreskin problems in uncircumcised children

Am J Dis Child. 1986 Mar;140(3):254-6. doi: 10.1001/archpedi.1986.02140170080036.


We performed a retrospective survey to determine the frequency of problems of the foreskin among uncircumcised children. Among 545 boys aged 4 months to 12 years, there were 272 uncircumcised boys and 273 control patients who were circumcised at birth. The total frequency of complications was significantly higher in the uncircumcised group (14% vs 6%). Both balanitis (6% vs 3%) and irritation (4% vs 1%) were more frequent among the uncircumcised children, but the difference was not statistically significant. Problems with adhesions were uncommon (1.5%) and equal in both groups. Symptomatic phimosis was seen in eight patients. The frequency of medical visits for penile problems was significantly higher in the uncircumcised group (10% vs 5%). Although the overall frequency of complications was higher among the uncircumcised children, most of the problems were minor.

MeSH terms

  • Balanitis / etiology
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Circumcision, Male / adverse effects*
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Penile Diseases / etiology*
  • Penis / pathology*
  • Phimosis / etiology
  • Retrospective Studies
  • Tissue Adhesions / etiology